Dancing with the Shadows and Archetypes Part 2 – Facing Death

Cancer led me to meet me,
Recognize me and appreciate me.
When traditional doctors told my family that the discovery of my cancer was a miracle,
I knew I was given a second chance to live with purpose.
Cancer was an opportunity for me to unlock my fullest potential.
I rarely talk about my healing process.
I rarely share the gifts I’ve experienced from such opportunity.
I rarely brag about it because a part of me doesn’t want to focus on the pity I may get.
A part of me wants to keep it quiet,
A part of me wants to share only the Golden lessons without telling the origin,
A part of me fears I can be put on a stand and be judged by critics for using my story – you know those who think they have the right to validate you and your existence.
A part of me fears people will throw rocks at me because my story is not as painful as others, or even sadder than others.
A part of me has even questioned if such story even existed – when the only thing that keeps it real for me is the little blue vial where my biopsy is stored.
Cancer cells grew in the deepest part of my appendix,
quietly reaching out one layer at a time toward the surface,
A silent growth toward my own death,
A death that I had been asking for with suicidal thoughts,
My body was listening,
My body was feeling it,
My body was following my thoughts.
Doctors told my family that if this irregular silent growth had not been discovered,
Death would have been the only sign something was happening inside of me,
Death would have arrived unexpectedly before my 19th or 20th birthday.
No symptoms, no discomfort, no pains, no external signs that cancer was growing rapidly.
Or was I not listening?
I never considered my life was saved by a miracle,
My appendix gave off the silent secret, an organ that many doctors say has no purpose,
That is not needed, not important.
Many don’t even classify it as an organ.
I laugh when they say that the appendix is just there, with no purpose
This “no purpose” organ saved my life
This “not important” organ spoke out loud at 3am, it gave me the pain to fucking wake up and pay attention to my body, to my life and to my destiny.
Everything and everyone has a purpose, many times we just don’t see it.
Before cancer I rarely listened to my body because I used it to inflict physical pain to distract from my emotional and spiritual pain.
Before cancer, I never paid attention to my own heart beat, playing doctor was of no interest to me.
Before cancer I was living in a body with no recognition of its full power.
Facing pain at 3am like never before, I heard a voice say “You want to die, here is a taste of it”
Right there I knew I was facing death.
Right there I questioned my story.
Do I really want to die?
Facing death,
Facing a story that I was telling myself for over a decade,
Do I really want to die?
I was not ready for it,
I recognized I had been telling myself a story that a part of me felt trapped in this body with no way out – just death, and
That another part of me felt rejected, and
That another part of me felt like I didn’t belong here, and
That another part of me felt like I was not wanted, and
That another part of me felt insignificant, and
That another part of me felt stupid and retarded, and
That another part of me felt incompetent and like such a loser.
A story with a death request that I had been telling myself since very young when I felt small and powerless.
That night I was not ready to die, I am not ready any time soon.
Facing this voice,
Facing the taste of death, I questioned myself if this was truth to me anymore.
What I saw was me being 16 years old with a strong and courageous personality to stop abusers from hurting my mom, sister, and little brother.
If I died who would be there to protect my mom and siblings?
If I died who would stand up to my dad and older brother when they wanted to hurt my mom?
If I died who would be there?
Facing death made me realize that many parts of me grew stronger than I ever gave myself credit for,
I grew courageous to stand up to my father and older brother, ready to fight and protect my mother.
At 16 years old I fought like a rebel boy, I fought dirty and fearless – my older brother got a taste of it one day when he hit my mom and knocked her to the floor where she passed out. That day I won a fight but the battle was not over.
Father never raised a hand to me, and later in life he confessed that he gained respect and admiration for my fearless attitude and strength–another story for another day.
Facing death invites you to revisit your story, see yourself, recognize all parts of you and all you have accomplished in your life,
It invites you to give yourself credit for all the things you don’t yet, and to value what’s most important to you.
Facing the death whisperer let you see your whole life in an instant and shatter your being, showing you what you truly desire in life.
I knew I desired to live,
I had to live,
I had so much to create, and I still do!
I had so many people to help who are going through trauma like I did, my siblings, parents and all my bloodline for thousands of years.
Facing death with cancer has led me here,
To look at my life from a place of gratitude rather than a place of sorrow.
To look at all parts of me, my lights and my shadows, as precious gifts, unique to my existence.
How would you live your life if you knew you had less than 12 months to live?
What story would you destroy and what story would you create?
Facing death has been a gift to many of us to live fully and fearlessly, asking for what we desire.
What are you giving yourself permission to desire today?

Lucia Gabriela